How to list education on resume? If Education Section is one of your strongest selling points, place the it near the top of the resume. This applies to recent high school or college graduates. If you’ve graduated within the past few years and have a degree related to your profession, place it near the top of the resume as well.
About Education, Credentials and Licenses
If you have trade school or college training, say so most of the time. The exceptions to this rule pertain to a degree that was “almost” completed, the “wrong” degree, or a degree in progress.
If you have only a high school diploma, do not list it or the name of the high school. The exception is if you are a recent high school graduate looking for work. You should include credentials, certificates, and licenses that required coursework, internships, or a testing process, provided that the credential or license is still relevant to your field.
Resume Education Examples
First consider any of the following alternative headings for your Resume Education section. You can combine several words if you have degrees and licenses that don’t warrant two separate category headings:
- Academic Credentials
- Academic Preparation
- Continuing Education
- Industry Training
- Professional Certification
- Professional Training
Recent High School Graduate resume
If you’re young and fresh out of high school, you’ll want to mention your graduation. Include a section on coursework relevant to your job goal, just as Peter did when looking for a clerical position.
GRADUATE OF ROOSEVELT HIGH SCHOOL
Business Coursework: Principles of Accounting; Business Office Protocol; Business English (emphasis on grammar, spelling, punctuation, letter format); Statistical & Business Reporting
Computer Applications: Excel, Word, Access, Powerpoint, WordPerfect
Co-curricular Activities: Varsity Volleyball, Marching Band
Leadership: Elected by classmates as Student Body Secretary/Treasurer. Represented Senior Class before School Board meetings.
Recent College Graduate Resume
How to list Education on resume if I’m recent grad? You can go heavy on this section. If education is your biggest selling point, don’t be afraid to let it take up “visual center of the page”. In the following example, Rogers leveraged his lack of paid experience by positioning an impressive Education Resume category at the center of the page. He then stretched it to more than three inches of vertical space by using a variety of subheadings:
UNIVERSITY OF THE PACIFIC
Dual Major: Bachelor of Science Degree, Business Administration—Option in Finance [year] Bachelor of Arts Degree, French [year]
Course Work Highlights: Entrepreneurial Finance; Portfolio Management & Theory; International Finance; Business and Real Estate Economics; Monetary Policy and the Banking System
Honors: John Bradford Scholarship Recipient (based on academic performance)
Degree Obtained a Number of Years Ago
How to list Education on resume if my degree has obtained some years ago? Place education near the top of the resume if you received a degree within the past three years and the degree is related to your profession. If you graduated more than three years ago and gained relevant experience in the meantime, consider placing your education toward the bottom of the resume, below your experience. If you graduated many years ago, definitely place education at the bottom of the resume and eliminate dates of graduation.
UNIVERSITY OF THE PACIFIC
Bachelor of Science Degree, Business Administration Option in Finance
Degree in a Field Different from Your Major
How to list Education on resume if have different field degrees? Many people obtained college degrees in an area entirely different from his present profession. When your degree does not support your job target and you are competing against individuals with industry-supporting degrees, consider listing just the degree and eliminating the major. Place both the degree and the college on one line to “thicken” the line and camouflage the fact that you haven’t listed the major. Sheila held a 10-year-old degree in music and was applying for a Director of Food and Beverage position, while many of her competitors held degrees in hotel management. She used this approach.
Bachelor of Arts Degree—University of the Pacific, Stockton, California
Cristian, a liberal arts/education major and now an insurance claims examiner, had taken a number of courses in business. He, too, eliminated her major but included the emphasis, along with relevant industry training. Note how he also added certification to her category heading.
Bachelor of Arts Degree, Business Emphasis—University of California, Santa Barbara
Certification: IEA Certificate; Advanced coursework in Labor Code & Current Case Law and Advanced Issues in Workers’ Compensation
In some cases, a major apart from your profession can be a point of interest, especially if you have pursued training in your new profession since graduating from college. Anna, a secretary applying for similar positions in law firms, held a degree in fine arts. Since many of her competitors had not completed a baccalaureate program, she listed her degree along with additional courses pertinent to her job target. She reported receiving a number of favorable comments about her degree in fine arts from employers with whom she interviewed. In this case, her degree, although not related, helped distinguish her from other candidates.
Legal Secretarial Program, Sacramento Community College
Coursework included Criminal Justice System, Civil Litigation, Family Law, Criminal Law, Legal Records Management, Trial Preparation, Legal Research, English I & II, and WordPerfect—Advanced Functions
Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA), University of Kansas, Lawrence
Those with a two-year degree who are competing with four-year-degree graduates can add psychological weight to their degrees by printing the word “degree” in capital letters and then abbreviating the associate’s degree to A.S. or A.A. On first glance, the reader’s focus is on the word “DEGREE” rather than the type of degree.
DEGREE: A.S., Business Administration / Marketing Emphasis
State Center Community College District
Did you complete your degree in another country? If so, it’s often hard for U.S. employers, especially smaller companies, to understand the U.S. equivalent of your degree or take it as seriously as they might a degree conferred by a U.S. institution. For instance, many people would be at a loss to figure out what the phrase “High National Diploma” mean. In England, these are similar to a high school diploma and a baccalaureate degree, respectively. When readers could be confused about your degree, offer a parenthetical statement to clarify.
High National Diploma, Economics and Finance
(equivalent to Bachelor of Science degree in Economics)
Including Credentials, Licenses, and Certificates
How to list Education on resume if I have many to items list? When you have several elements to list under Education, such as credentials, licenses, and certificates, try giving each listing a subheading. This looks especially clean if each series of items that follows the subheadings fits on one line. Note also that each list after the subheadings begins at a common tab setting.
Degree: Bachelor of Arts, Liberal Studies, University of Kansas, Lawrence Credentials: Single Subject Teaching Credential—English
Certificates: Language Acquisition Specialist; Early Literacy Certification
Degree Not Completed
How to list Education on resume if still in college? Many people have sincere intentions and plans to finish college, but “life” sometimes gets in the way. For those who completed most of a degree but didn’t take home a sheepskin, consider one of the following alternatives. This first presentation uses bold, capital letters for the words “degree program,” allowing you to work in the word “degree” despite not having one.
DEGREE PROGRAM: BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION, Fremont City College
The next example suggests that you almost completed a degree, as well as offers a hint about why you didn’t finish it.
UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA
Business Administration Major—completed 31/2 years of degree program before accepting management training opportunity with Betsam Engineering Company.
The use of a parenthetical statement about your grade-level status also implies that you have completed most of the requirements for a degree. If you decide to pick up the reins again and go back to complete your degree, add the words “anticipated completion, [month] 20__” after the words “Senior Status”.
UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA
Bachelor of Business Administration Program (senior status)
UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA
B.B.A. Degree Program—Senior status, anticipated completion June [date]
How to list Education on resume if I haven’t degree? If you attended college a short time or took courses of no professional significance, you’ll draw more attention to the lack of a degree by including an Education section than if you were to omit it entirely. No Education section is often better than a weak Education section.
To further camouflage any lack of education, make sure you use more than two major category headings in the rest of your resume, such as Objective and Professional Experience, so consider adding a third category, such as a Skills, Affiliations, or Endorsements section.